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Volume 26 No. 207
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WTA Sees Success In Partnership With Indiana Univ. East

Since the WTA partnered with Indiana Univ. East in '13, Venus Williams and eight other women's tennis pros "have graduated" from the league's exclusive provider of online education, at a time when "most players with legitimate aspirations of winning major tournaments turn pro before colleges have a chance to recruit them," according to Laine Higgins of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. Eleven players are currently enrolled at the school of "about 3,200 students" in Richmond, Ind. Graduation rates for WTA players are "high in part" because the Women’s Tennis Benefits Association "requires participants to have a financial stake in their education." IU East "pays 50% of the players’ tuition and the WTBA covers another 25% of costs; players are responsible for the remaining 25%." This is a "major departure from previous educational agreements," like the ATP’s partnership with the Univ. of Phoenix, which saw one graduate in '12. The WTA estimates that its portion of tuition is "about $4,000 to $5,000 annually per player." Days before the U.S. Open began this month, the WTBA also "finalized an agreement" with the Univ. of Florida’s School of Health & Human Performance, in which enrollees can "earn a masters in one of four areas." Talks are "ongoing about expanding the partnership to include Florida’s College of Journalism and Communications" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 9/5).